The Church of the Epiphany in Zhirovichi village
Churches, katolik churches, сathedral, monasteries
Zhirovichi is located near Slonim in Grodno region, where flows the Shara river. For beautiful scenery, people, deservedly call this territory "Slonim’s Switzerland". The town was firstly mentioned in chronicles in the 15th century, and is associated with Soltan’s possessions, as it was his property. Soltan is widely known for initiating the construction of a wooden church in the place where the image of the Mother of God was revealed. Years later, the church was burnt in fire.
Rapidly in the vicinity of the church, a settlement began to form; a monastery appeared, thanks to which, Zhirovichi, from a small town, turned into the largest center of culture and commerce. For a long time, Zhirovichi was owned by Sapieha, and then Myaleshka. The remarkable fact is that, in due time, Zhirovichi even had Magdeburg Law and, therefore, possessed many privileges. During the long war with neighboring Russia, town and the monastery were burnt to nothing. For a long time Zhirovichi was a part of the Russian Empire, Poland and Belarussian Soviet Socialist Republic.
Today Zhirovichi on the Belarusian map is a place of pilgrimage for Christians from all over the world, who are well aware of this small Belorussian town with a glorious long history. The main attraction of Zhirovichi is the Monastery of the Holy Dormition, which appeared in the village in 1470. This place in Belarus is rightly considered one of the most inmost and recognizable ones. There is the icon of the Mother of God in this monastery, appeared on a stone. In past years, the monastery was known as the most influential and prosperous one in the Belarusian lands. During its existence, the Monastery of the Holy Dormition was opened to the Orthodox parishioners, then it belonged to “bazilians” and at the 19th century, an orthodox parish was again restored.
In the vastness of the monastery three temples are located , one of the most important places among which occupies the Church of the Epiphany in the village Zhirovichi, included in the list of cultural sights of Belarus. The construction of the Epiphany church was made in popular those days, Baroque style. Church of the Epiphany in the village Zhirovichi has interesting personal façade design: because of the elongated half-columns, the church visually seems much higher than it is. The church was reconstructed several times, gaining new features and forms. The Epiphany Church in the village Zhirovichi, was supplemented by the elements of the later Baroque style, starting with the figure gable and attic finishing. Now the church is decorated with a bulb-shaped dome –which is an element characteristic of pseudo-architectural style. The church is not particularly large inside, because most of the space is occupied by an altar. Not so long ago an iconostasis decorated with carved elements appeared in the church.
Electricity is completely absent here.
During the Second World War, the German High Command used the temple for ammunition storage.
The Church of the Epiphany in the village Zhirovichi is one of the main Belarusian shrines you should visit at least once in your life.